Three individuals that were sought by ICE but not found during a sweep last month in northern California have been arrested for new crimes. The ICE sweep made news because of an advance warning issued by Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf. Fox News reported Tuesday on the identities of the three individuals who have been re-arrested:
One was a Mexican national arrested for robbery and gun crimes, who was released back into the community for a prior offense despite an ICE detainer request in November.
Another Mexican national was arrested for a DUI, despite having been deported three times and prior convictions for false imprisonment, DUI and battery of a spouse.
The third was a Mexican national who was arrested for corporal injury of a spouse, despite being deported twice and criminal convictions including drug possession, hit-and-run, DUIs, possessions of narcotics equipment and a parole violation.
This is just the latest skirmish in an ongoing battle between federal immigration authorities and the state of California. California has passed several laws which prevent ICE agents from working in local jails. Earlier this month, the DOJ announced it was suing California over three of those laws. That came after the Mayor of Oakland, CA took things to a new level last month when she announced an ICE sweep in advance.
ICE went through with the sweep anyway and eventually arrested 232 individuals out of approximately 1,000 it had targeted. ICE Director Tom Homan was outraged and compared the Mayor to a “gang lookout.” He said her warning was responsible for helping some of the 864 people ICE was unable to locate avoid arrest. “864 criminal aliens and public safety threats remain at large in the community, and I have to believe that some of them were able to elude us thanks to the mayor’s irresponsible decision,” he said.
There is a caveat here which has been glossed over in some of the statements that followed. ICE never manages to capture 100% of the people it is seeking. According to a DHS official who spoke to the NY Times, they usually arrest about 30% of the people they are trying to find. So while it’s almost certainly true that some of the 864 people who avoided arrest did so because of Mayor Schaaf’s warning, many probably would have avoided arrest even without the warning. And it goes without saying that it’s not clear if the three specific individuals mentioned would or would not have been arrested by ICE if not for the warning. It’s possible, we just don’t know for certain.
What we can say is that individuals who are arrested for crimes are not being turned over to ICE for deportation because of California’s sanctuary state policies. As a result, some of those people are on the street and commit further crimes rather than being deported. What some on the left really want is to get rid of ICE altogether, but that’s not happening anytime soon. And in the meantime, California’s sanctuary policies make it more likely ICE will be working in neighborhoods rather than focusing on jails.
Director Homan revealed the information about the three people who had been re-arrested as part of a roundtable discussion on illegal immigration and sanctuary city policies held Tuesday at the White House. Homan said when concluding his remarks, “ICE isn’t asking local law enforcement to be ICE officers.” He continued, “We don’t want them out making vehicle stops asking immigration questions.
“What we want them to do is give federal law enforcement officers unfettered access to a county jail to take custody of somebody that is in the country illegally and yet committed another crime against the citizens of this country. It’s safer for the officers. It’s safer for the community.”
Here’s a video of the roundtable queued up to Homan’s comments.